Thursday, March 26, 2015

Fort Worth Zoo Homeschool Day

We love Homeschool Day at the Fort Worth Zoo!  We get to hang out with our friends but there are always special educational activities and keeper talks for the kids.

We were on our way to a talk on the Komodo Dragon but got distracted by this Gharial swimming right towards us.  Don't worry, They are behind glass!  The Gharial are the largest species in the crocodile family with average adults measuring 11 ft - 15 ft in length.


I love this quote by John Muir.  It's so true.  Our world is in a delicate balance and every change that happens in nature has some small affect on the world we live in. 


We got to the Komodo Dragon exhibit early because Nicholas wanted to be sure to get a good spot.  The Komodo Dragon is the largest living species of lizard with a maximum length of 10 feet and weighing up to 150 pounds!


We had the exciting opportunity to watch the Komodo being fed.  The keeper fed him from a distance because they are strong and can get aggressive when food is involved.


After the keeper talk, we went to an educational class in the amphitheater.  We learned about the corn snake.


We touched a real ostrich egg!


And learned about big toads.


Here is Rachel's interpretation of a toad!


We walked along some of the exhibits and Nicholas caught this cute dragonfly.  He always has a way with catching bugs of any kind!


As many times as we've been to the zoo, we've never noticed the Tasmanian Tower, a 25 foot climbing tower inside the Australian Outback section of the zoo.  Tickets are $3.00 and you get three attempts to reach the top.  Each time you slip off the wall counts as one attempt.


Nicholas got pretty high but he lost all three attempts trying to get over the ridge right above him in this picture.


We went back to another class and Rachel was eager to answer the keeper's questions.  I was so proud of her for not being shy!


She was really being brave today because she even decided that after the class, she wanted to go back and try the Tasmanian Tower too!


Nicholas was determined to give it another attempt and he went right past that ledge that had defeated him earlier in the day!


And he made it to the top of the 25 foot tower and rang the bell!  I'm so proud of his determination and persistance!


Of course, we HAD to stop by the aviary so the kids could feed the birds.  They LOVE this part of the zoo.


Nicholas is amazingly patient when he is trying to get a bird to come to him.  He held the food stick up to the bird and slowly pulled it away until the bird stepped off the branch and onto the stick.


He was so excited but managed to stay still so he could keep the bird on the stick.


He was even being a great big brother by teaching Rachel how to get a bird on her stick too.


She is not as patient and quite giggly when the birds start eating from her stick!


Next, Nicholas tried to lure the bird onto his hand...and it worked!


But why stop there?  He had the bird walking up his arm!


Mama always loves to see the Bengal Tigers, perhaps a little reminder of home (LSU's Mike the Tiger!).  Rachel was very concerned that the tiger in the bottom of the picture was dead.  I explained that she was just sleeping but Rachel watched her like a hawk and was finally relieved to see her pick up her head to look around.


Beautiful beast...


We headed towards the elephants and I noticed this neat sign.  What an easy way to break down the steps of drawing an elephant.  I'll have to try this with the kids when we get home.


My silly kids



Nicholas said the giraffe was looking right at him.  I think he was!


Rachel loved watching the Meerkats scurry around and in and out of their tunnels.  There is always a sentinel who stands up and looks around to warn the family of danger.


Ok, this picture was just funny to me.  It almost looks like a mirror image! Ha ha!


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